Getting started with Biodynamics
Have you heard the term 'CPP' used and wondered what it means? Or perhaps you've heard people use the full term 'Cow Pat Pit', and it's no clearer?
Sometimes Biodynamics seems more mysterious than it needs to, and the names for things like CPP become a code name. Put simply, it's cow manure which is mixed with a little crushed egg shell, some volcanic rock dust, kneaded for an hour, and gets the six Biodynamic compost preparations added to it: yarrow, chamomile, stinging nettle, oak bark, dandelion and valerian. Traditionally this is stored in a brick-lined pit in the ground for a few months where it transforms from fresh manure into fine humus full of all the goodness of the compost preparations.
to use the CPP, you take a small handful and mix it in a bucket of warmed up rain water. Stir the mixture to create a vortex, like a whirlpool effect, and then change the direction of stirring to create a vortex going the other way. Repeat this backwards and forwards stirring action, alternating between creating order and then disrupting with chaos.
After 10-15 minutes you can then use the liquid over your garden, your seedlings, your lawn, and even your houseplants.
It's a fabulous way to promote soil health, and for newcomers to Biodynamics it's a nice way to start making your own preparations. If you don't have bricks to make a pit, experiment with different sized terracotta pots, and dig them into a free draining section of your garden. You want the mixture to be able to breathe, but to not get rained on - I use a terracotta saucer over the top of the terracotta pot.